Similar to the same-sounding song of times past, my experience of Saturday last would easily evoke such an exclamation. It was the grand opening of the newly constructed clubhouse at our country club that set the venue of my misfortune. The second night of a weekend-long event, a country and western theme gave the party a casual atmosphere, and cowboys and cowgirls gathered from miles around.
Most East Texas folks know that Oklahoma women are, by nature, mean. The suggestion that women from Oklahoma are typically in league with the devil is so plausible that it remains uncontested. It is one of such women who is a principal figure in this tale.
Little Sammi Jo, a lady of beauty and flash, was born an raised in Nowata, Oklahoma, a tiny town on the outskirts of the oil boom of the thirties. The diminutive damsel is blessed with a sparkling smile and a glimmering glance that veil the demon within. Never forget, though, she is Nowata Gal.
My wife’s feigned illness was cause for her to remain at home, whilst this writer set about to dutifully fulfill the social obligation of attendance at the important event. The group was large and the flow of fellowship soon matched the flow of wine. As the hours wore on the music became more stirring, and the need to trip the light fantastic swelled within me.
Seated with friends, a group that included sweet Sammi Jo, we rejoiced in the throes of libation, and soon the dance floor beckoned. It was at the suggestion of her husband, showing courtesy for my stag status, that I take little Sammi to the dance floor for a lively two-step. Though I am many years her senior, I fully expected that I could perform admirably, be it a Texas Two-Step or the Neutron Dance.
Innocently, I hastened the comely lass to the epicenter of the action as the dance began. Rhythmically writhing, we traversed the entire space of the allocated surface, turning and spinning like dervishes to the tune of a popular George Strait tribute to our firefighters. These motions, when described in this context may seem ostentatious, but when melded among the adjoining renditions, we were lost in the crowd, gliding through an ocean of delirious dancers. No turn or gyration would be particularly noticeable within the confines of the crowded floor.
As the music swelled in crescendo, signaling the finale of the song, the time for a last tumultuous turn seemed to call from the timbre of the tune. With all our musical vigor, we faced each other for the end, raising our coupled hands to create a human arbor. As I sought to initiate the culmination of the event, the winsome wench suddenly took control, and rather than release one hand to facilitate the requisite rotation, she clutched both my hands in a death grip. Nowata Gal was now in the lead. The momentum of our motion was such that I had no choice but to follow.
It was then that the demonic dwarf invoked the dreaded “Nowata Twist.” Later described as “skinning the cat,” the dance move/wrestling hold forced our counterpoised bodies into opposing revolution beneath our conjoined grasps, forcing every connection of my skeletal system to react in diametric opposition to normal repose. Wrenched by the terpsichorean torture and then released, I found myself suddenly restored to the original juxtaposition that had preceded the diabolical contortion. Only a split second had elapsed, and the music ended.
Owing to the brevity of the event the senses had not yet caught up with the body, and there was no response to indicate any trauma within the tired torso. Wildly laughing, Sammi Jo celebrated the moment much in the fashion of a Black Widow having just ended the life of her spent mate. Numbed by a potato elixir, I too, joined in the laughter, celebrating the moment, though not knowing of the dire consequences yet to follow. Laughing and cajoling continued to the party’s end, and I left the event literally feeling no pain.
It was the next morning that a sudden signal from the sanctity of the sacroiliac brought to bear the terrible trauma that I had unwittingly endured. Lumbar functionality was noticeably lost, and spinal manipulations were no longer under the direction of the central nervous system. Wishing to rise from my bed (in the guest room) while wincing in pain, I repeatedly attempted bodily motion without success. Time is a healer though, and the discomfort later subsided to the extent that I could right myself without assistance. (This is not to say that such assistance would have been forthcoming or even available to me from my homebound spouse.)
Later, as I gingerly gained mobility, I gulped down a cup of coffee and began to gather my thoughts, reflecting upon the blurred events that preceded. It was only at this moment that I came to the realization that I had fallen victim to Nowata Gal. In the glee of festivities, the damage was not apparent, but now, it was clear. The “Nowata Twist” had claimed another unwary soul.
An irrevocable pledge forced my participation in a Sunday morning golf match, even though my condition would prudently prohibit such sport. Unable to achieve an equitable wagering adjustment for my physical constraints, I moved to quickly complete play, and return to my domicile.
In the course of the day my losses in association with the match summed, to the penny, one hundred dollars. Given the high level of skill at the game for which I have gained considerable respect, it is fair to say that the monetary loss was solely attributable to the infirmities occasioned by my fateful dance with the lovely agent of Old Scratch.
Applying the potential for such loss to the ten years hopefully remaining in my golf life, damages accrue in the amount of $60,000. Adding, though difficult to exactly quantify, the value of pain, suffering, and the indignity associated with the sudden absence of golfing skill, an equal amount, the tab is now $120,000.
It is obvious that the wicked deed was an act of wantonness. Malicious intent is suggested. To perpetrate such an act upon one of advancing years is tantamount to mayhem. Though in the guise of frivolous folly, dereliction of duty to act in a reasonable way in dealing with an aged being is most obvious. Being want of thought, the vicious vixen has exhibited gross negligence in her execution of the despicable act, thereby warranting treble damages as prescribed by law.
Daunting, though, is the fact that the very one who encouraged my participation in the deleterious dance, Sammi's husband, is himself a plaintiff’s lawyer. His complicity is boldly apparent, and with his professional association recognized, it is likely that he, too, is allied with Old Nick.
A victim, injured by the negligence of the pair, I must seek to be made whole again. The resultant claim in the trebled amount of $360,000 should stand in the view of any jury.
Comes now the tedious matter of obtaining legal counsel. Because those lawyers of a personal injury bent are bound by a secret code, it is difficult to find one willing to set upon another, even for substantial gain. Owing to the collusive environment of the barrister band, it may be necessary to seek justice without professional representation.
Pro se and perplexed, I shall move to advance my cause within the courts. My cause is just, my loss is genuine, and my course set. Thus, I shall pursue the matter until virtue is duly rewarded and redress prevails.
With the proceeds of the settlement, I plan to establish a shelter for men battered by Okie women.
One might be well advised to seek background information upon any woman with whom you might become involved, even in the most casual of circumstances. An Oklahoma origin would be the harbinger of grief, despair, and injury.
A warning to all who might fail to the sirens' call: When the music mesmerizes, and the will is weakened by the allure of an Oklahoma lass, spare yourself and flee.